Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Nuggets vs. Hornets Preview

(Boulder-CO) Around six o’clock tonight I will be heading down to the Edge Water Inn to eat some really good pizza prior to heading to the game with my girlfriend and her awesome dad (gratuitous brownie points scored!). He was a high school men’s varsity basketball coach for years so it is always good to get his opinion on different things throughout the game. It has also kind of been a ritual for her and I to eat at the Edge Water Inn before going to Pepsi Center and every time that we have done so the Nuggets have won. At this point we figure that the Nuggets are going to need all the witch craft, voodoo, jinx-breakers, and any other ritualistic good luck-bringing tomfoolery that any of us can muster, so I don‘t think I need to remind you to do your part.

The Nuggets owe the Hornets for a 99-89 loss incurred during the suspensions and while Marcus Camby was out with the broken bone in his hand. In that game the Nuggets only played eight men deep and, believe it or not, even Jamal Sampson made it out onto the dance floor. It was a horrendous night in which the Nuggets only recorded a record low at the time 13 assists and as a team shot an ice cold 26% from downtown thanks to Earl Boykins, Yakhouba Diawara, and DerMarr Johnson all finishing 2-7 each from deep.

It is being rumored that AI will be back in uniform for tonight’s game and I think he will be the determining factor in whether or not the Nuggets win. He and Chris Paul will be in a great match-up of super-quick guards, but as Allen Iverson has told the press before, “I don’t know anyone as quick as me.” Nevertheless, CP3 is coming off another rock solid performance of 24 points, three rebounds, six assists, and five steals and is by far and away the best young point guard in the league today. As he goes so do the Hornets so it is of that much more importance to make him work on the defensive end just as hard as he does on offense in an attempt to wear his quickness down. And with no offense to Steve Blake, Iverson is the only player on the Nuggets roster that can get that kind of request filled.

Just as I told you that the Nuggets wouldn’t win against the Suns on Monday night, I have the exact same feeling about this game, only with the exact opposite end result. I do have just one condition however and the pivotal point of contention is the return of Iverson. If AI does return I feel that the Nuggets will win this game. If the Nuggets are so lucky to also have Camby return to action you can expect Denver to win big. I don’t have a crystal ball, but with the play of Nene at it’s peak so far, Carmelo still leading the league in scoring, and J.R. Smith back in the shuffle I just don’t think that the Hornets can keep up with the Nuggets at altitude. I still feel that they snuck one away from us in their own building while we were nearly deaf, dumb, and blind, but the Nuggets are like a rabid dog just looking to bite someone right now. They are hungry, angry, and have been kicked around just enough as of late that I think this is going to be a breakout game. Just you wait and see!

It should also be mentioned that the Hornets, coincidentally, are coming off a loss to the Sacramento Kings where they too haven’t won a game in Arco Arena in the last ten years. Hooray decade long losing streaks!

Get to know thy enemy, Nuggets fans, by checking out the best Hornets blog on the 'net over at http://www.hornets247.com/.

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